Allison Anderson

My research investigates issues in aerospace biomedical engineering and human physiology in extreme environments. My focus is to develop technologies to measure and mitigate the body’s adaptations to extreme environments, which also has direct implications for patient populations here on Earth. I investigate human performance, biomechanics, and injuries in extravehicular activity. My work has quantified contributing factors associated with shoulder injury in the spacesuit. We are currently developing wearable sensing systems to assess comfort and biomechanics in the spacesuit. My work also focuses on assessing changes in intracranial pressure and the fundamental physiology of the eye when in microgravity, while changing postures, and when under fluid shift using lower body negative and positive pressure. I investigate the cochlear mechanism of distortion product otoacoustic emissions and their response to changes in intracranial pressure. This work facilitates our understanding of the vision alterations seen in some astronauts after long duration spaceflight. I also have experience measuring behavioral health outcomes in isolated, confined environments, investigating the use of virtual reality for attention restoration and relaxation. This work has been extended to use alternative reality technologies (e.g. virtual reality) for habitat design, human factors, and ergonomics evaluation of spacecraft. My work draws from the fields of engineering, physiology, biomechanics, electrical engineering, statistical data mining, and human experimentation to designing technologies to measure, address, and improve the body’s physiologic response to extreme environments. Our research group continues to expand into additional exciting research areas, but ultimately it all ties back to designing technologies that measure, address, and improve the body’s response to spaceflight.

My students come to Bioastronautics with skills in engineering, human physiology, biomechanics, design, electronics, statistics, and human experimentation. I am always looking for smart, creative people who are passionate about human spaceflight and improving human health on Earth. If this research is exciting to you, please e-mail me ( your CV, a short description of your specific research interests, and your goals in pursuing a PhD. No form letters please!